Chicago Suburb Square Foot Garden 2013
Gardening Year: 2013
Location: Bartlett, IL
Planting by Color: Green/Maroon
As I begin planning my 2013 garden I’ve reflected on what failed last year. Our very warm spring turned into a crazy hot and dry summer; which I believe contributed to a poor yield overall. See my 2012 post here and my 2012 plan I revised per everyone’s helpful comments below:
Last year I started peppers, tomatoes, cabbage and eggplant indoors. The jalapenos and cabbage did very well both indoors and after I transplanted them. However, I had some trouble indoors with may tomato starts. The leaves kept curling up and falling off despite having plenty of water. They did better once I moved them into the garden, but I only got ONE tomato off of the two surviving plants. I bought one replacement tomato plant and didn’t get any tomatoes off that either. So after two years of tomato failure I have decided that they do not like my raised beds and I will plant them in pots on the south side of my house in full blazing sun. If that doesn’t work, well then I guess I just wasn’t meant to grow tomatoes.
I have also learned that winter squash also do not like my raised bed garden. Both plants did not do well this year. However I planted two winter squash on the east side of my house in a flower bed and they did great (although powdery mildew put a damper on my yield). Powdery mildew seems to be a constant issue with all of my squash, both summer and winter. I have yet to find a good organic means of dealing with it.
Oh, and one more thing… We planted a peach tree and got 5 peaches last year!! Maybe I should be growing fruit instead.
Anyhow, enough about my very pathetic 2012 garden, here is my plan for this year:
One thing that I have learned over the past two years is that I am more than capable of growing beets and carrots. So I will definitely continue to grow lots of them. I have had some success with onion sets, although they are usually pretty small and I’m wondering if maybe I’m planting them too deep.
I got one watermelon last year. This year I think I will try to grow them up the trellis in the northern garden.
Things that are new this year are: Garlic, Broccoli, Cauliflower and Rutabaga (fall ’13). The garlic I planted last fall as it is my understanding that it has to over-winter. Winter squash I will continue to grow on the east side of my house in the flower bed.
So, what do you think? Am I being too ambitious with the cauliflower (considering that I can’t even grow tomatoes)? Do you have any tips for growing tomatoes in containers? Anything you would move?
I am going to try to update at some point this summer, hopefully with some pretty pictures of my garden full of vegetables. Thanks for your help as always!